New Zealand Navy to support Fiji’s maritime surveillance program

New Zealand intends to deploy a Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) inshore patrol vessel to Fiji for three months in 2018 to support maritime and fisheries surveillance.

The RNZN inshore patrol vessel will be deployed to Fiji between May and August 2018.

Later this year, a New Zealand offshore patrol vessel will also conduct complementary patrols in Fiji’s wider exclusive economic zone.

As explained, this will build on the successful deployment of the HMNZS Hawea to Fiji in 2017.

“New Zealand is very proud to be partnering with Fiji to support their programme of maritime surveillance and security,” Winston Peters, New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs Minister, said.

“We share a deep and abiding interest in supporting the region’s maritime security and ensuring that the Pacific’s natural resources are protected for future generations. Fiji has an exclusive economic zone about one third the size of New Zealand’s and, as fellow island nations, both our countries place enormous importance on the security and protection of our maritime environment,” Peters added.

“This deployment will further links between our two countries, detect and deter illegal fishing in Fiji’s waters, and complement regional surveillance coordinated by the Forum Fisheries Agency,” he pointed out.